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A Bundist Talks About the Bund

by Dvora Zylberman   I HAVE ALWAYS wondered what qualifies someone to write an article on a given topic. I had always assumed that one needed to be an expert in a given field to give an interesting and insightful angle on a given issue. It is fair to assume that an expert qualified to write […]

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Esther Abrahams and the First Jews in Australia

Esther Abrahams, born in 1767 (or 1771 by some sources), was one of between eight and fourteen Jews among 800 British convicts who anchored in New South Wales on this date in 1788, as part of the first fleet of British prisoners sent to colonize Australia. Abrahams, convicted of shoplifting silk lace in 1786, had given […]

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Helena Rubinstein

Helena Rubinstein, creator of a cosmetics empire was born in Krakow, Poland on this date in 1872. She emigrated to Australia in 1902 and began to develop “beauty creams” made with a lanolin base, which was hugely abundant in the sheep-rich country. Within a few years she had fashionable salons in Sydney and in London. […]

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Jews as an Indigenous People

LET’S PRACTICE SOLIDARITY WITH INDIGENOUS PEOPLES by Marc Daalder   AMONG ALL the indigenous peoples of the world, the Jewish people have a unique tale. Suffering displacement from their ancestral land twice (the Babylonian captivity in 597 BCE and the diaspora from 135 CE), Jews nonetheless succeeded in retaining their cultural connections to the Land of […]

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Barbra Streisand’s Israel Omission

by Ron Skolnik MILLIONS of American Jews have traditionally regarded Israel as the ultimate backup plan. While relatively few have chosen to live there (and many of those who do end up returning to America), Israel has always been cherished as a place of refuge, the go-to country if, Heaven forbid, the situation in the […]

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The Uncivil Servant: America, Seen from the Antipodes

by Mitchell Abidor Andy Blunden is an independent scholar in Melbourne, Australia. A Hegelian who frequently lectures on the German thinker and has published many books on philosophy, he is also an administrator of the Marxists Internet Archive. Andy is a longtime political activist who left Australia for England in 1966 after burning his draft […]

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January 26: The Rum Rebellion

Captain William Bligh (of Mutiny on the Bounty infamy), governor of New South Wales, was overthrown by armed rebellion and arrested (from under his bed) on this date in 1808, twenty years to the day after the start of British colonial settlement in Australia. The Rum Rebellion, as it was called, was led by Major […]

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March 24: Melbourne’s Novelist

Australian writer Andrea Goldsmith, the author of seven novels that all feature central lesbian characters, was born in Melbourne to a fifth-generation Australian family of secular Jews on this date in 1950. Trained as a speech therapist after a slow-to-speak childhood, she began writing fiction at 8 and published short stories in the 1970s while […]

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January 21: Sir Isaac Isaacs

Isaac Alfred Isaacs was sworn in as Governor-General of Australia on this date in 1931. Isaacs (1855-1948) was the first Australian-born Governor-General, and the only person to serve both in that role and as Chief Justice of Australia. He was the son of a London-born mother and a Polish tailor who came to Australia during […]

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December 6: Aborigines Against Anti-Semitism

Members of the Australian Aborigines League, led by William Cooper, 77, marched through Melbourne to the German Consulate on this date in 1938 to present a petition protesting Kristallnakht, the Nazi-sponsored pogrom against German Jews. The contingent was turned away at the consulate gate. Cooper had organized the League four years earlier as one of […]

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